THEIR STORY: CAREY NIEUWHOF

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Carey Nieuwhof, founding and teaching pastor of Connexus Church, is a familiar face at Break Forth One. Last year Carey taught a number of classes and workshops, which received such great feedback that we invited him back again to speak on leadership.

Carey has written several books and resources on this subject and hosts a weekly podcast on leadership. While he was finishing his seminary degree, he became a student pastor at a church that had an average attendance of 6. But the church quickly grew, becoming a multi site church that now reaches almost 1000 people each weekend.

Over the years, Carey has experienced both  highs and lows. Part of what makes Carey’s resources so valuable is that they are filled with personal examples of struggles that he’s faced as a leader… situations that some of you might even be experiencing right now. For example, here’s a blog post Carey wrote on his experience with burnout.

Whether you’re in a leadership role right now experiencing those same highs and lows, or are about to step into one, Carey’s classes are ones you definitely don’t want to miss this year at Break Forth One. Click the workshop and class titles below to learn more:

Workshop 1005. The High Impact Leader
Class 8. Renewing the Leader’s Heart

"The biggest obstacles you face in leadership aren’t around you; they’re within you."


Nieuwhof, Carey. “Start Here.” Carey Nieuwhof, 2 Oct. 2017, careynieuwhof.com/start-here.

Nieuwhof, Carey. “A Decade Later: My Top 10 Insights On Burnout.” Carey Nieuwhof, 20 Jun. 2016, careynieuwhof.com/10-insights-burnout-10-years-making.

Nieuwhof, Carey. “10 Quotes From The Eagles That Will Challenge Every Leader.” Carey Nieuwhof, 25 Jan. 2016, careynieuwhof.com/10-insights-burnout-10-years-making.

 

THEIR STORY: ALBERT TATE

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Ministry is a big part of Albert Tate’s heritage. Both his grandfathers were preachers and he grew up in the church. But it wasn’t until his highschool years that Albert came to personally accept Christ into his heart.

While he felt liberated with his new found relationship with Christ, Albert still carried the baggage of his past. At this point, Albert should’ve been entering his senior year but due to his poor grades he was held back as a Sophomore. He wrestled with the shame and guilt of his failing high school grades, which he had been keeping a secret from his parents. Albert came to understand and experience for the first time what true freedom felt like when he finally had an honest conversation with his mom and came completely clean about his struggles. Here’s how Albert described it:

“There’s something about telling the truth about what’s really going on with you, so that God can do the whole redemptive work that He wants to do. So on January 23, 1994, I gave my life to Jesus Christ and I felt some freedom but man I really got free that summer night in my mom’s bedroom when I told her the full truth of the sin I was struggling with.”

Despite his academic struggle, Albert not only finished high school but went on to graduate from both Bible College and Seminary. Albert and his wife now leads a rapidly growing multi-ethnic church in California, Fellowship Monrovia, which they launched in 2012. His gift of storytelling and sense of humor is so evident when he’s up on the pulpit. Just check out this clip from one of his sermons:

It’s going to be a fun Friday night with Albert Tate bringing his dynamic personality to the Break Forth One stage. To save your spot, click here.


Bayside Church. “Albert Tate Suit Story.” YouTube, YouTube, 15 Dec 2016, www.youtu.be/xJVD0MbiieY.

Fuller Studio. “Albert Tate: ‘Don’t Buy The Fake News of the World'.”  outreachamagazine.com, Outreach Magazine, 20 Sept. 2017, www.outreachmagazine.com/features/24619-albert-tate.html
 

 

THEIR STORY: MARK CLARK

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Raised in an atheist household, Mark Clark grew up as a skeptic. But despite his upbringing and struggle with Torette’s syndrome, Mark is now the pastor of one of the fastest growing churches in Canada. His charismatic personality and his love for the local church is evident through his preachings and teachings each Sunday. Here’s what a secular news outlet is saying about him and his growing church:  

How an unlikely pastor started one of Canada's fastest growing churches
Jesse Johnston · CBC News June 29, 2017

In late 2009, Village Church was born in Surrey, British Columbia, when Mark Clark preached to 16 people who were gathered in his house. Today, Clark's sermons are heard by thousands every Sunday in Surrey and Langley and he is the lead pastor of one of the fastest growing churches in the country.

The tale of how Village reached this point — at a time when many churches in Metro Vancouver are struggling — is almost as unlikely as how Clark became a pastor. He grew up in an atheist household and had Tourette's syndrome — a neurological disorder that can cause a person to twitch or blurt out involuntary words. In his late teens, however, Clark followed a girl he liked to a Sunday service in Ontario and was struck by what he heard. He decided he wanted to start a church of his own.

"I started asking how could I reach people like me who grew up in an atheistic home."

Clark also married the girl.


Humble beginnings
Clark says churches that don't reach 200 members by the time they're two years old generally don't ever grow beyond a few hundred people.

"We figured if we could reach 200 by January 2012, we thought we might get some momentum and maybe pay me a bit of a salary and keep the lights on," he said. 

In a matter of months Clark needed to set a new goal.  Village moved to the Bell Centre in Surrey and gradually added more services and campuses to accommodate larger crowds.


Sky is the limit
Village plans to expand to Calgary, Toronto, Montreal and several small towns across the country where recordings of Clark's sermons will be played. Staff will work on site to build more personal relationships with members. Clark says he's not concerned people in new cities will feel disconnected if their pastor is preaching on a video screen instead of in person.

"If you're sitting in a room and someone is on stage communicating at say a conference or something, what you tend to do naturally is look up at the screens anyway," he said.

Clark says he often flashes back to the early days.
"I think about it pretty well every week, man," he said. "I just thank God."
 

Want to get to know a bit more about Mark? Check out this interview below:


Johnston, Jesse. “How an Unlikely Pastor Started One of Canada's Fastest Growing Churches.”  CBC, CBC Radio Group, 29 June 2017, www.cbc.ca/beta/news/canada/british-columbia/village-church-growth-1.4184294.

Turning Point Zone. “Interview | Pastor Mark Clark.” YouTube, YouTube, 10 Aug 2016, www.youtu.be/fwxO_sgbcV4.

 

THEIR STORY: MARGARET FEINBERG

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“Without coffee, mornings would be difficult. Without God, life would be impossible."

Despite being a popular Bible teacher and speaker at churches and leading conference such as Catalyst, Thrive and Women of Joy, Margaret Feinberg is a fun, loving, down to earth coffee lover, who has learned what it means to be joyful in every situation.

Margaret was in the midst of writing a book on joy when, at the age of 39, she was diagnosed with cancer. She very quickly went from seeking joy in good times, to having to hunt for it in one of the deepest and darkest moments of her life. Over the next 18 months of her agonizing battle with cancer, Margaret learned to live with what she describes as “defiant joy.”
 

"Joy is far more than I ever thought or been taught. It’s a more dynamic, forceful weapon than most of us realize. When we fight back with joy, we lean into the very presence of God — the one who fills us with joy, even on our most deflated todays."

Margaret further describes her battle with cancer and this defiant joy in the interview below:

Come and be encouraged by Margaret, her testimony and her defiant joy at Break Forth One 2018.

 

Feinberg, Margaret. “Meet Margaret.” Margaret, margaretfeinberg.com/about/.

Merritt, Jonathan. “Christian writer Margaret Feinberg shares breast cancer struggles, lessons on joy.” Religion News Service, Religion News Service, 14 Jan 2015, www.religionnews.com/2015/01/14/christian-writer-margaret-feinberg-shares-breast-cancer-struggles-lessons-joy/.

Religion & Ethics NewsWeekly. “Margaret Feinberg on ‘Defiant Joy’.” YouTube, YouTube, 21 May 2015, www.youtu.be/kax8lIvj3bY.